High THC strains are all the rage these days. Cannabis cultivators are competing to put out the strain with the highest THC percentage and consumers often judge the quality of a cannabis strain based on its THC percentage. It can be tempting to grab whichever flower or edible is rocking some high THC numbers, but before loading up on some Lucky Golden Pineapple or Gold Leaf Peppermint Cookies, read on to learn more about THC and its effects on your brain and body. Plus, we’ll provide you with some tips for dealing with that “too high” feeling.
The Role of Terpenes and THC for Potent Euphoric Effects
THC is the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. To put it simply, THC is the primary cannabinoid that makes you feel high.
THC (usually) produces a euphoric effect by entering your bloodstream after metabolizing and then binding to cannabinoid receptors in your brain and central nervous system. The resulting feeling is comparable to that of a “runner’s high.” Why is this? THC is thought to be the plant equivalent of the neurotransmitter anandamide which is released while running. Anandamide, impacts feelings of bliss, memory, pain, appetite, and more. Both THC and anandamide are able to bind to cannabinoid receptors.
Now, many people have heard of THC and CBD, but what about terpenes? Terpenes are one of many types of chemical compounds found within the cannabis plant. These fellas are what gives cannabis it’s potent aromas and flavors.
There are many kinds of terpenes, each resulting in different effects. Some may work to counteract the effects of THC, while others will help to enhance it. Terpenes have been found to work in synergy with other compounds in cannabis. This relationship causes the effects of terpenes to vary depending on the chemical makeup of the cannabis plant. Check out Leafly’s Terpene Reference Guide for more information on terpenes and their effects.
The Importance of Microdosing
THC potency has increased in cannabis from around 2 percent in the 1980’s to around 12 percent in 2014. Many strains can top 20 percent, while others are even nearing 30 percent. It’s important to recognize that if you’re seeking the medicinal and therapeutic effects of cannabis, less can oftentimes be more.
THC consumption can be described as a biphasic effect. Low doses provide the desired, euphoric state. High doses can induce anxiety, impair memory, and mitigate medicinal benefits. Studies have found that while low to moderate doses helped reduce pain, high doses exacerbated the pain. Cleary microdosing is ideal in these use cases.
An additional benefit of microdosing is that it allows you to find the dose that is right for you. Start small, perhaps a single hit out of a pipe. Wait ten minutes or so and focus on how you feel. If you feel like you can handle more, take another hit. Note the strain that you are smoking. What’s the THC percentage? CBD percentage? If you feel that the high is too intense, try a strain with a lower percentage of THC or higher percentage of CBD. If you’re not feeling any desired effects, perhaps try out a strain with a higher THC percentage.
Origins Cannabis Short List of High-THC Strains
Now that we’ve gone over the basics of THC, let’s take a look at high THC strains that we offer here at Origins Cannabis. We’ve chosen strains from both our Redmond and West Seattle locations so be sure to check the availability of the strain you want on your store’s respective menu. You can filter the results by clicking “sort by” and then selecting “THC percentage.”
As you experiment with high THC strains, keep in mind that the effects cannabis has on your body vary depending on the individual. Cannabis reviews should be taken with a grain of salt as they are purely subjective, except for, perhaps, taste and smell.
Lucky’s Golden Pineapple (Lucky Devil Farms 27.22% THC)
This hard-hitting hybrid is a cross between Golden Coat and Pineapple Kush. It is known for its uplifting effects and tropical taste. Those who have smoked it also rave about having a boost of creativity.
Gold Leaf Rudeboi OG (Kokua Services 24.94% THC 0.05% CBD)
A fun hybrid that will put a smile on your face and have you feeling stress-free. There is a noticeable earthy taste to Rudeboi OG and a pungent skunk scent.
Gold Leaf Peppermint Cookies (Kokua Services 24.5% THC 0.1% CBD)
A tasty award-winning strain that will help you de-stress and giggle. There is an unmistakable minty taste to it that will have you taking more hits just to satisfy your taste buds.
Dutch Brothers Pineapple Express (Dutch Brothers 24.41% THC 0.06% CBD)
Pineapple Express is a legendary strain that’s known to cannabis and comedy connoisseurs alike thanks to its role in a similarly named Seth Rogen film. The combination of the potent strains Trainwreck and Hawaiian results in a strain that provides a happy and energetic high.
Side Effects of High THC Strains
Smoking high THC strains may result in some undesirable effects, such as paranoia and anxiety. While cannabis can be used to treat anxiety in small doses, it may actually increase it in large doses. High THC strains, which are more potent, may make it more likely that users will experience psychoactive undesirable side effects.
Dry mouth and red eyes are a common physical side effect of THC. While these are just minor inconveniences, they are undoubtedly annoying. Drink lots of water and pop in some eye drops to avoid these nagging effects.
High THC strains have also been shown to impair memory. Luckily, memory loss appears to only be short-term. This memory loss could lead to lethargy, AKA being okay with doing nothing. Those unaccustomed to cannabis consumption and even cannabis veterans may want to steer clear of high THC strains if they have a lot that they need to get done. However, if you’ve had a stressful day and need to turn that stress button off – prepare to chill, meditate and relax with your high THC strain experience.
A good counter to the aforementioned side effects is finding a strain that is high in CBD. CBD has been shown to counteract the psychoactive effects of THC while still providing all the medicinal and therapeutic benefits.
How to Counteract a Too Intense High
Finding yourself a little bit too high for your liking? High THC strains can easily be overdone if you’re not used to them. While there is no way to stop yourself from being high, there are a few things you can do to make your high more enjoyable.
The most important piece of advice is not to panic. Nobody has ever overdosed from cannabis and the overwhelming feelings you’re having are only temporary. Take a deep breath, perhaps even meditate. Drink some water, take a shower, and remind yourself that everything will be okay. Taking CBD or sniffing black pepper may help take some of the edge off your high.
If you’re in a crowded place and feel trapped, don’t’ be afraid to leave and get some fresh air. If you’re home alone, find something to distract yourself. Films, video games, YouTube compilation videos, whatever floats your boat. If all else fails, lay down in bed and get some rest. When you wake up the feeling will more than likely be gone.
Do You Need a Tolerance Break?
If you’re someone who is able to consume high THC cannabis in large doses and not feel any effects, it may be beneficial to take a tolerance break.
Research has shown that regular cannabis consumers build up a tolerance to cannabinoids, notably THC. Taking a short-term break to clear your body and mind of cannabinoids will help you experience the psychoactive effects of cannabis once again. It could also save you some money in the process as you won’t have to consume nearly as much for the desired effects.
Hopefully, this page has helped you learn a little bit more about THC and cannabis in general. If you have any additional questions, our budtenders at our Redmond Dispensary or our West Seattle Dispensary would be more than happy to answer them for you.